Inspiration struck when someone reviewed that I didn't have to stick with the original movie plot. I didn't really like that ending – sweet but a little Hollywood. With that in mind – here's some angst
Although Dean doesn't say anything about the disastrous party he doesn't call Castiel either. A week of unanswered messages and watching his darkened bungalow later, Castiel finally breaks.
He drives to the White Castle and parks up, going inside to find a squirrelly looking shorter man serving in Dean's place. The man takes one look at Castiel over the crowded and greasy counter.
"You're Cas, right?"
"I'm Chuck...Dean, uh...he said you might come around, looking for him."
"Where is he?" Castiel's voice sharpens as he senses something wrong.
"He's gone" Chuck says, bluntly. "He quit a week ago, just walked in and tore up his punch card. I heard he moved out to New York."
"Do you know anything more than that?"
Chuck shakes his head.
So he'd lost him. Dean, the first person he'd genuinely enjoyed the company of since Anna died. A source of comfort, conversation and truly amazing sex.
And hell, if he's being honest, perhaps the focus of the first glimmer of love that has managed to resurface from the broken place inside of him.
Dean is gone.
Across the state, Dean is getting ready to go to work. His hair is clean and he's pressed a white dress shirt. His black jacket is slung over a chair, waiting. He works as a host in a small Italian restaurant. It's not a Michelin star place, but it beats the hell out of selling burgers.
He's enjoying himself. Though he's the oldest guy on the wait staff and he hasn't made a single friend since he moved into his new apartment. But it's only been a week.
He takes in his reflection in the spotty mirror, behind him the drab apartment with its rented furniture glowers back.
He misses Castiel.
There, he admits it.
Somehow his drunken charity fuck became the one person he can't be without. Someone who he'd run from just to avoid his inevitable rejection. Because he knows that's where they were headed. Men like Dean were not made for boys like Castiel. Dean is older, harder inside and lost with no hope of turning his life around. Castiel is new, and young and special. He can still make himself happy.
So this is his life now. An apartment in the city, a reasonable job in a restaurant and a decent pay packet. He has so little down time it barely makes a difference if he has friends or not.
Dean goes off to work.
Castiel sits in his deserted home, listening to opera playing several darkened rooms away. Dean has left an impression on him like a bed once slept in. His scent and touch linger indelibly.
Castiel has lost the only two people he has ever loved.
Broken isn't the word.
They pass Dean's birthday, the mark of his forty-fourth year, separate and alone. Dean never told Castiel the date, consequently he does not forget, but rather mourns the loss of the entire month. Dean works a double shift and downs half a bottle of tequila afterwards. He wakes up groggy the next morning feeling old and shivery. What he longs for in that moment is a warm body curled against his back, whispering 'good morning' and offering good coffee and better company.
He knows that's exactly what he wants because he experienced it once, the only night he stayed at Castiel's home.
Instead he gets his mildewed shower, a grim ejaculation onto the grey tiles. Yesterdays re-heated coffee and a solitary few hours snuggling against blankets that lost their warmth as soon as he left them.
His hangover intensifies, the Tylenol bottle is empty and there's no one to get some more.
Dean does not cry, too old, too dried out for that. But he closes his eyes, feels a spasm in his throat like a dry heave – a trapped sob. He hasn't felt this emptied out since Ben died. The closest thing a deadbeat queer like him had to a kid – his friend Lisa's son. Killed in a car accident years ago. He remembers the call from Lisa, the way she hadn't wanted him to come to the funeral. Her husband had always been weird about him spending time with Ben.
A lance of fear hits him, Castiel could be dead, or hurt and no one would call him. No one even knows who Dean is or where he lives now. He squeezes his eyes tightly shut, curling his large body in on itself until his muscles burn. He can't think about it, he needs to stay away from Castiel, in reality and in his own mind.
Castiel is doing his best to find Dean, unbeknownst to him.
He's checked the address on Dean's last pay slip, some PO box in town which told him absolutely nothing. He's let himself into Dean's empty home with the spare key – no clues. Called and been chewed out by everyone in Dean's contact list.
No one knows where he is, and if they do they aren't telling.
He's quit his job, not that he needed it anyway, he can keep himself comfortable on his savings. He's selling his house, which helps. His realtor is finding him a place in New York, which he knows is ridiculous, but he can't shake the feeling that he stands a better chance of finding Dean if they're in the same place.
He moves at the end of January, with no one to say goodbye to.
Dean works more and more late shifts now. His pay is racking up, more than he spends on rent and booze anyway. Sometimes, lonely on his few off nights and caught in the kind of frustration that hits red blooded, libido driven men like himself, he contemplates hiring himself someone. Just some guy of the street with dark hair and a soft mouth.
He doesn't, because somehow the idea of someone else's mouth on him rips him up inside. The thought of waking up with someone else's arms around him is worse.
He's working late on this particular night, waiting at the wooden stand by the door to greet customers and take reservations. It's fairly slow this time of night, only a few people who've been to a show, or impulsive couples on a night out. The restaurant is a level down from the street, so he can see people's legs coming down the steps towards him, but not the cars or pedestrians above.
A pair of sneakers pad down the concrete and Dean sighs. Sure it's not a fancy place but he has to turn away anyone without proper shoes, some rule of the management. He hates doing it, and he really doesn't need the grief right now, or ever in fact.
"Sorry buddy, no shoes, no service." He says, flicking through his reservation book as a diversion.
"I'm wearing shoes."
He looks up, that voice is horribly familiar. It's Sam, Castiel's friend whose party he went to once, months ago.
"Uh...not the right kind, sorry." He tries not to look him in the eye, because really? He doesn't want this to be taken personally, and it will be if he's recognized.
"Oh, come on, it's what? Midnight, who'm I going to piss off?" Sam's clearly a little drunk.
"House rules, sorry." Sam blinks at him.
"Hey...hey I know you...you're Cas's...boy toy, or whatever..." He frowns, apparently not trying to insult Dean but too happy to notice. And he is happy, grinning all over his puppyish face. "He's been looking for you...he hasn't called me in a while, but everyone knows about him moving up here and asking around trying to find you...and I found you." He frowns extravagantly. "I was just looking for pizza."
"We have that too" Dean mutters, stunned. "Castiel, he moved here? To New York?"
"Yup" Sam shakes his head "Which is messed up, he loved that house. Well...it was his and Anna's so I guess..." he looks at Dean again. "You ran away?"
"Yeah...just shut up for a second, let me think."
"You're a little old to be running away." Sam mumbles to himself. Dean ignores him.
Castiel is in New York. Castiel came to find him.
"Hey, Sam? Do you know where Castiel lives?" Sam rubs his eyes.
"An apartment...uh...I can take you there. It's in the village."
"What's he doing there?"
"Looking for you" Sam rolls his eyes hard. "s'like you're not even paying attention."
Dean and a cheerful Sam make their way to Castiel's apartment, he isn't there but his neighbour lets them into the building once Dean explains that he and his 'brother' are old friends of Cas's who ended up catching an earlier flight to visit him. He sits with his back to the wall beside Castiel's front door, legs sprawled across the dingy carpet. He can't imagine Castiel living in a place like this, someone so cultured and downright beautiful slumming it in a standard apartment block.
He's just drifting off, head against the door jam, when he hears footsteps and then,
"Dean?" Castiel is poised, about to unlock a door at the other end of the hall. Dean gets to his feet quickly, kicking Sam in the process.
"Ok, wrong door, not a good start." He rubs a hand against the back of his head. "Hi, Cas."
Castiel looks different. Well, that's an understatement. He's just as clean and well kept as ever, but he's wearing a baggy blue sweater and dark jeans with high-tops. There are grocery bags on the floor next to his feet.
And right now he only has eyes for Dean. Which in the older man's book makes him all the more attractive.
"How did you find my...oh, hello Sam." Castiel frowns down at his friend. "Why didn't you use the key I gave you."
"Oh you're kidding me." Dean's brow wrinkles. "I've been sitting on the floor for three hours, for nothing?"
"Not nothing" Castiel says quickly. "I'm glad you waited...I'm glad you're here...period." he falters. "Dean...I..."
"I'm sorry" Dean interrupts. Castiel looks taken aback. "I'm forty-four I should know better than to run off like that...it was a dick move, so...sorry." he looks down at Castiel's grocery bags. "you...uh...want some help with those." Castiel nods. Together they get all the bags into the kitchenette, then usher Sam inside and onto the couch. Dean has no idea what time it is but it feels late, or just very early by this point.
Castiel looks exhausted. Dean feels like he could drop any minute.
"Dean" Castiel catches his gaze and looks at him like he's afraid he's going to run away. "I missed you...so much, while you were gone." He takes a breath. "I shouldn't have lied to you about Gabriel's party, and I shouldn't have taken you to Sam's..."
"Wait, I want...I want to do this. I shouldn't have taken you to Sam's because I shouldn't have been there. I...don't really like being around people like Zachariah or Ruby. I only stay in contact with Sam because he's a genuine friend."
Sam snores loudly.
"Really?" Dean smiles nervously.
"He brought you here." Castiel says, softly. "and he helped me move..." he shifts back to his previous train of thought. "I realised I was wrong to protect myself from their scorn, I should have been protecting you. You matter." His eyes harden. "They do not."
"Well then..." Dean's never been good with talking like this.
Castiel smiles hesitantly, then closes the space and kisses him, shyly, on the lips. Dean responds quickly and within seconds their mouths are interlocking hungrily, messily leaving smudges of dampness across the surrounding skin. It's Dean who eventually pulls away, hands still on Castiel's belt.
"I feel bad for saying it...but if I don't get some sleep now...I might pass out." He looks Castiel hesitantly in the eye, aware that refusing to have sex might result in another rift. "if that's ok, I mean."
Castiel frowns, taking Dean's hand from his belt and leading him by it towards the bedroom. Once there he closes the door quietly and wraps Dean into a hug.
"Of course it's ok. Dean, I meant what I said, you matter to me...and I'm glad you're here." He presses a chaste kiss to the older man's temple. "so let's get some sleep."
The next morning Dean wakes up with Castiel wrapped around him like an octopus. Legs and arms twisted up with his own, face against his collar bone. Dean's holding him just as tightly. It almost makes up for all the months of loneliness it took to get him here.
Castiel eventually gets up to make coffee, Dean stays in bed, listening to Sam groan into wakefulness, talking to Castiel.
"So...you're with that guy now, huh?"
"I was before Sam" comes Castiel's even reply.
"Yeah but...we thought that was just a fling or something. I mean, after Anna I figured maybe you couldn't even think about another woman."
There's a long pause.
"Not that I'm saying that's why you're with him" Sam covers, quickly. "I just..."
"I'm with him" Castiel says neutrally "because he picked me up in a bar, blind drunk, and seduced me, it was amazing...and I keep coming back for more." A smile tinges his words. "and because I love him, there's that."
Dean settles back against the still warm pillows, smelling coffee as a warm weight forms in his chest. Castiel loves him...how about that?
Sorry if this came out too sweet, I was kind of going for a 'relationship' vibe, as opposed to more of the sex and conflict of the previous chapters. Not sure if it came off.